Tag Archives: 1997

Seasonal Stories: Liverpool FC (1996-1997)

A missed opportunity

This was Roy Evans’ third full season as Liverpool FC manager and the pressure was increasing on him to bring back silverware to the Anfield trophy cabinet. Liverpool had an emerging young crop of players coming through along with a few experienced heads and in 1996-1997, they looked like a genuine title contender. They were five points clear going into the New Year.

However, too many dropped points against inferior sides, a series of goalkeeper blunders from David James and questions about the team’s mentality saw the challenge ebb away and on the final day, the Reds were squeezed into fourth place courtesy of goal difference. It definitely felt like a missed opportunity.

Squad: David James, Rob Jones, John Scales (Left in December 1996), Bjorn Tore Kvarme, Jason McAteer, Mark Wright, Phil Babb, Steve Harkness, Neil Ruddock, Stig Inge Bjornebye, Dominic Matteo, Jamie Carragher, Mark Kennedy, Michael Thomas, Jamie Redknapp, John Barnes, Steve McManaman, Patrik Berger, David Thompson, Stan Collymore, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen

Bagging Berger

After finishing third in 1995-1996 behind Manchester United and Newcastle United, Liverpool FC were seen as a creditable contender for Premier League glory. Six whole seasons had now passed since the Reds had been English champions and that was far too long for many of the patient supporters.

Manager Roy Evans didn’t see any need to invest heavily in the summer transfer market but he did swoop for the Czech midfielder Patrik Berger from Borussia Dortmund. Berger had excelled at the 1996 European Championships, helping his country reach the final and Liverpool snapped him up for £3.25 million.

One player who did move on was Ian Rush, who had announced his departure towards the end of the previous campaign. Rush was LFC’s all-time leading goalscorer but had now fallen behind Robbie Fowler and Stan Collymore in the pecking order and elected to move on for a fresh challenge at Leeds United.

Setting the pace

Liverpool’s first game of the new season came at The Riverside Stadium against Middlesbrough and it was a thrilling contest. The Reds led three times through goals from Stig Inge Bjornebye, John Barnes and Fowler. However, they had to be content with a 3-3 draw thanks to a spectacular opening day hat-trick from Middlesbrough’s new striker, Fabrizio Ravanelli.

The first victory arrived two days later when two Steve McManaman goals defeated Arsenal 2-0 at Anfield and Liverpool stayed unbeaten for the first eight matches of the Premier League campaign, topping the standings at the end of September.

Berger settled in very quickly, grabbing a brace on his LFC debut in a fine 3-0 away win at Filbert Street against Leicester City before repeating the trick in a fabulous 5-1 victory over Chelsea at Anfield. Fowler was still scoring goals as freely as the previous campaign and even the unlikely source of Phil Babb popped up with the winner at his old stomping ground of Highfield Road.

There were only three defeats in the first half of the campaign. The first came at Old Trafford in mid-October thanks to a David Beckham strike. There was a dismal day at Ewood Park where Liverpool lost 3-0 to bottom-placed Blackburn Rovers and in early December, surprise packages Sheffield Wednesday claimed a 1-0 victory and became the first team to leave Anfield with all three points in the 1996-1997 campaign.

Fowler scored four goals in the return fixture with Middlesbrough and when Barnes rolled back the years with a winning goal from distance in the final Premier League fixture of 1996 away at Southampton, Liverpool went into 1997 holding a useful five-point lead at the top of the table.

29th DECEMBER 1996 TABLE

POS TABLE P W D L F A GD PTS
1 LIVERPOOL FC 21 12 6 3 38 19 +19 42
2 Manchester United 20 10 7 3 42 25 +17 37
3 Arsenal 20 10 7 3 37 20 +17 37
4 Wimbledon 19 11 4 4 33 23 +10 37
5 Newcastle United 20 10 4 6 35 22 +13 34
6 Aston Villa 20 10 4 6 29 19 +10 34

Faltering signs

1997 did start with a 1-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge to Chelsea who would also stage an extraordinary fightback from 2-0 down to beat Evans’ side 4-2 in the FA Cup fourth round. Liverpool though were still conducting business in the Premier League in a fairly professional manner.

They kept five successive clean sheets in the top-flight after the setback in west London and dismissed Aston Villa and Leeds United very comfortably. The Villa game saw the first Premier League appearance from young defender Jamie Carragher and he scored the opening goal too in the 3-0 triumph.

The first signs of a faltering title bid came towards the end of February against Blackburn Rovers on home soil. Despite dominating possession and creating a host of chances, Liverpool’s finishing let them down with Fowler especially guilty of missing glorious openings. The 0-0 draw was the third stalemate at home in the season for Liverpool and this was an omen of things to come.

A week later, a late Ian Taylor goal sent Liverpool to defeat at Villa Park and gave reigning champions Manchester United a four-point lead at the top of the table. Liverpool dropped further points away at The City Ground, drawing 1-1 when Ian Woan punished a dreadful goalkeeping error from David James.

James was starting to cost Liverpool crucial points, earning himself the unfortunate nickname of ‘Calamity James.’ In early April, he was at fault for both goals to allow 20th place Coventry City to come from behind to pull off a stunning 2-1 victory at Anfield. The title dream was ebbing away and the supporters knew it.

A catastrophe against Manchester United

In that period, Liverpool did beat both Newcastle United and Arsenal. In the latter game, Fowler won a UEFA Fair Play Award for attempting to overturn Gerald Ashby’s decision to give the Reds a penalty after Fowler went down without any contact from Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman.

There were serious question marks about Liverpool’s hunger and mentality. Some of the young players – particularly Fowler, McManaman, Jamie Redknapp and Jason McAteer were criticised for partying too much and not focusing completely on football. Another unfortunate tag was dished out with this group being referred too as ‘The Spice Boys.’

The final nail in Liverpool’s title coffin came when league leaders Manchester United arrived at Anfield on 19th April. This was the Reds last chance and they put in a deeply disappointing display. They conceded two sloppy set-piece goals to Gary Pallister and James had another catastrophe, failing to catch a cross and allowing Andy Cole to score one of the simplest goals of his career. The Red Devils won 3-1 and it was all over.

Title hopes officially ended on 6th May when Liverpool lost 2-1 to Wimbledon which ended their mathematical hopes of catching Manchester United. The only plus point of a thoroughly frustrating evening at Selhurst Park was the emergence of young prodigy Michael Owen. Owen came off the bench and scored with virtually his first chance in the senior side. Having impressed greatly at youth level, this was Owen’s big moment and a goalscoring star was well and truly born.

Second place was still up for grabs on the final day but Liverpool could only draw 1-1 at Sheffield Wednesday. Rivals Newcastle United and Arsenal both won which saw them overtake Liverpool on the final day on goal difference. Newcastle grabbed second spot which meant they would compete in the following season’s UEFA Champions League.

Despite having been considered as the best team for much of the season, Liverpool FC had nothing to show for their efforts. Fourth place and two cup semi-finals was seen as a major underachievement for this emerging team and they wouldn’t get a better opportunity to end the league famine for the remainder of the 1990s.

FINAL 1996-1997 TABLE – FIRST TO SIXTH

POS TABLE P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester United 38 21 12 5 76 44 +32 75
2 Newcastle United 38 19 11 8 73 40 +33 68
3 Arsenal 38 19 11 8 62 32 +30 68
4 LIVERPOOL FC 38 19 11 8 62 37 +25 68
5 Aston Villa 38 17 10 11 47 34 +13 61
6 Chelsea 38 16 11 11 58 55 +3 59
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Premier League Rewind: 13th-14th September 1997

Results: Arsenal 4-1 Bolton Wanderers, Barnsley 0-3 Aston Villa, Coventry City 1-0 Southampton, Crystal Palace 0-3 Chelsea, Derby County 3-1 Everton, Leicester City 3-0 Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool FC 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday, Manchester United 2-1 West Ham United, Newcastle United 1-3 Wimbledon, Blackburn Rovers 3-4 Leeds United

Going into the second month of action in the 1997-1998 season, it was Blackburn Rovers who were setting the early pace. New manager Roy Hodgson had made an immediate impact on his new side and they were scoring plenty of goals, finding the net 15 times in five matches. Blackburn were looking to keep their advantage at the top of the table and respond to Saturday’s action when they met Leeds United in the live televised Sky match.

Before they got the opportunity to play, history was being made at Highbury. Against Bolton Wanderers, Ian Wright finally managed to eclipse Cliff Bastin and become Arsenal’s record all-time goalscorer. Wright’s first goal saw him equal Bastin’s mark of 177 goals but in the excitement of scoring the equaliser, he took his top off and revealed a vest he was wearing ‘178 – Just Done It!’ He was slightly too keen but five minutes later, a more routine tap-in was the goal that saw him break the record. To cap his amazing day, he completed his hat-trick with nine minutes left, taking his tally to six goals in six games. Arsenal won the game 4-1 and remained unbeaten, playing some cavalier football under Arsene Wenger which was a welcome sight for the fans who had got used to tight, cagey games in the George Graham era.

Manchester United hadn’t quite reached full throttle yet but they were getting the results and that meant the reigning champions went top after beating West Ham United 2-1 at Old Trafford. After five consecutive clean sheets, the Red Devils defence finally conceded after 14 minutes thanks to John Hartson. Recently-appointed captain, Roy Keane quickly levelled the scores before Paul Scholes scored the winning goal with 14 minutes left to play.

They would stay top of the table as Blackburn were beaten for the first time in the season after an absorbing first half against Leeds, who went into the match on a run of three successive defeats and just outside the bottom three. Leeds made a great start, taking a 2-0 lead inside six minutes through Rod Wallace and Robert Molenaar. Within 16 minutes, Blackburn were level, thanks to a scorching strike from Kevin Gallacher and a Chris Sutton penalty. Attack seemed to be the best form of defence for both teams and the visitors stormed back into a two-goal lead. Wallace scored his second of the afternoon before David Hopkin finished off another sweeping counter-attack. On 33 minutes, Martin Dahlin got the better of Molenaar and beat Nigel Martyn with a shot that went in off the post. Naturally, the second half didn’t quite have the frantic approach of the first 45 minutes although Leeds finished with 10 men after Harry Kewell was sent off. Nevertheless, they held on for all three points and left Blackburn three points behind Manchester United.

Elsewhere and Newcastle United’s 100% start to the season was ended by a Wimbledon side who had started the weekend bottom of the Premier League. The Dons left Tyneside with all three points after an excellent all-round team performance, triumphing 3-1 with goals from Carl Cort, Chris Perry and Efan Ekoku. Southampton replaced them at the foot of the table after losing 1-0 away at Coventry City. Chelsea moved into third position with a fourth successive victory after cruising to a 3-0 success at Selhurst Park against Crystal Palace. Graeme Le Saux wrapped the scoring up in the 90th minute with his first goal in his second spell with the Blues.

What else happened in September 1997?

  • Over two billion people worldwide watch the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales which takes place at Westminster Abbey.
  • September sees the death of Mother Teresa, aged 87.
  • Both Scotland and Wales voted in favour of a devolved Parliament, meaning the formation of the National Assembly for Wales and the Scottish Parliament.
  • The IOC selects Athens as the host city of the 2004 Summer Olympics.
  • The National Geographic Channel is launched.
  • The Italian regions of Umbria and Marche are struck by an earthquake, causing part of the Basilica of St. Francis at Assisi to collapse.
  • The football teams in Scotland’s top-flight, including Rangers and Celtic, decide to split from the SFL and form the Scottish Premier League from next season.

 

Premier League Rewind: 22nd-24th March 1997

Results: Blackburn Rovers 0-2 Aston Villa, Coventry City 1-3 West Ham United, Derby County 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur, Everton 0-2 Manchester United, Middlesbrough 1-0 Chelsea, Sheffield Wednesday 2-2 Leeds United, Southampton 2-2 Leicester City, Sunderland 1-1 Nottingham Forest, Wimbledon 1-1 Newcastle United, Arsenal 1-2 Liverpool FC, Middlesbrough 1-1 Nottingham Forest

Having experienced a bad run in the early autumn of 1996 which included a three-game losing sequence, Manchester United had now embarked on a lengthy run of good form which had seen them lose just one of their previous 18 Premier League matches.

Favourites for a fourth championship in five seasons, the Red Devils extended that sequence with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Everton at Goodison Park. The goals came in each half. One from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the second from Eric Cantona which briefly gave Alex Ferguson’s side a five-point lead at the top of the table. It turned out to be Joe Royle’s last match as Everton manager. He resigned days later after just over two-and-a-half years in the role having led the Toffees to victory in the 1995 FA Cup final over Manchester United.

Title rivals Arsenal and Liverpool FC met each other two nights later in what always looked like being a decisive game in the title race. The match centred on a controversial incident midway through the second half. Liverpool were 1-0 up through Stan Collymore’s goal when Robbie Fowler was played through by Mark Wright and hurdled over David Seaman’s challenge in the penalty area. Referee Gerald Ashby gave a penalty despite Fowler’s persistence that there had been no contact and Ashby should change his mind. He didn’t and although the forward went on to have his spot-kick saved by Seaman, Jason McAteer scored the rebound and Liverpool held off a late Arsenal surge to win 2-1 and emerge as Manchester United’s closest challengers for the championship. Fowler later won a Fair Play award for his honesty in the incident with Seaman.

Newcastle United fell eight points behind Liverpool and therefore, an automatic UEFA Champions League qualification spot after being held to a 1-1 draw by Wimbledon at Selhurst Park. They remained narrowly ahead of the chasing pack which was now being led by Aston Villa. They moved up two positions to fifth in the table after recording a 2-0 away victory at Blackburn Rovers, courtesy of second half goals from Tommy Johnson and Dwight Yorke.

At the wrong end of the table, just six points covered the bottom six clubs. Southampton remained at the foot of the table after squandering an advantage twice to draw 2-2 at home with League Cup finalists Leicester City. Alan Neilson’s 70th minute own goal ensured a share of the spoils. Coventry City dropped into the relegation zone as their winless month continued against fellow strugglers West Ham United. Despite taking the lead through a Marc Rieper own goal, the Sky Blues were no match for the Hammers. Two goals from new signing John Hartson and a first-ever senior goal by Rio Ferdinand helped West Ham to a 3-1 victory. They had now lost just one of their last six matches.

Despite their three-point deduction being in-place, Middlesbrough climbed out of the relegation positions after gaining four points from two home matches, drawing 1-1 with Nottingham Forest two days after Juninho’s header saw them beat Chelsea 1-0. However, Boro’s demanding schedule with their deep involvement in the cup competitions would ultimately catch up with their players in the final reckoning.

What else happened in March 1997?

  • Prime Minister John Major announces the 1997 General Election will be held on 1st May.
  • Unemployment levels continue to drop to 1.8 million which is the lowest level since December 1990.
  • After declaring the Conservative Party as “tired, divided and rudderless,” The Sun newspaper decides to back Labour and Tony Blair ahead of the General Election.
  • Channel 5 begins broadcasting in the UK as the fifth major terrestrial station.
  • The English Patient wins Best Picture at the 69th Academy Awards.
  • Julius Chan resigns as Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea.
  • A pile-up on the M42 motorway in Bromsgrove involves 160 vehicles. Three people die and 60 are injured.

Premier League Rewind: 20th-22nd December 1997

Results: Aston Villa 1-1 Southampton, Blackburn Rovers 3-0 West Ham United, Derby County 0-0 Crystal Palace, Leeds United 2-0 Bolton Wanderers, Leicester City 0-1 Everton, Liverpool FC 1-0 Coventry City, Sheffield Wednesday 1-4 Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 Barnsley, Newcastle United 0-1 Manchester United, Wimbledon A-A Arsenal

This was the final round of matches before Christmas 1997, so the 1997-1998 Premier League table was beginning to take shape.

Defending champions Manchester United came into this round of fixtures four points clear. Whatever happened over the course of the weekend, they would spend Christmas Day on top of the table. They visited Tyneside to take on Newcastle United, who had been their closest challengers for the title in the last two seasons.

Newcastle though were not a factor this season and were beaten by their former hero, Andy Cole, whose second half header was enough to ensure a fifth successive victory for Alex Ferguson’s side since their November loss at Highbury to Arsenal. Peter Schmeichel though played a major part in them claiming the three points. His amazing save from a John Barnes header would earn him the ‘Save of the Decade’ at the Premier League 10 Seasons Awards in 2002.

Newcastle were 17 points off the pace and languishing in ninth spot having not won a single game in December. Instead, the nearest challengers to the Red Devils were the only other former Premier League title winners in Blackburn Rovers. Roy Hodgson’s side had lost just twice all campaign and responded brilliantly to a 4-0 loss at Old Trafford three weeks earlier. They consolidated second spot in the table, as they swotted aside West Ham United 3-0 at Ewood Park. Young prodigy Damien Duff scored twice for the home side whilst West Ham had Steve Lomas sent off.

Chelsea were enjoying their best run of form in the season and Ruud Gullit’s side would complete the top three on Christmas Day. They won 4-1 at Hillsborough against Sheffield Wednesday. Former Owls player Dan Petrescu, Gianluca Vialli, Franck Leboeuf from the penalty spot and Tore Andre Flo all scored in another impressive away display from the Blues. It was Ron Atkinson’s first home defeat since returning to Wednesday for a second spell as manager.

Leeds United were having a good campaign in George Graham’s first full season in the dugout. They beat Bolton Wanderers 2-0 at Elland Road to remain in the top four. Liverpool FC edged out Coventry City 1-0 to move into fifth and above Arsenal, who were now trailing United by 13 points in the table. The Gunners had lost four of their last six Premier League games and their title hopes looked slim at this point in the season. However, they couldn’t respond to all their rivals winning earlier in the weekend.

13 seconds into the second half of their Monday Night Football match with Wimbledon at Selhurst Park, the floodlights failed with the scoreline at 0-0. The lights didn’t come back on and incredibly, a third Premier League match in the season had been abandoned because of floodlight failure.

After two heavy losses, there was some relief for new Tottenham boss Christian Gross as his side comfortably beat Barnsley 3-0 at White Hart Lane, ensuring the Tykes would be bottom of the table at Christmas. Despite the win, Spurs remained in the bottom three as did Everton, who recorded their first win and goal in five matches. Gary Speed’s 89th minute penalty beat Leicester City 1-0 at Filbert Street.

What else happened in December 1997?

  • There is a political wedding as the leader of the Conservative party, William Hague marries Ffion Jenkins.
  • Football legend Tom Finney and singer Elton John are among those knighted in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.
  • After 44 years in service, the Royal Yacht, Britannia is decommissioned.
  • Inside Long Kesh prison in Northern Ireland, Ulster loyalist paramilitary leader Billy Wright is assassinated.
  • The highest grossing film of all-time, Titanic makes its premier in the United States.
  • The Kyoto Protocol is adopted by a UN committee.
  • The capital of Kazakhstan is moved from Almaty to Astana.

Seasonal Stories: Chelsea (1997-1998)

Sackings and cup glory

Having been a mid-table team in the early Premier League Years, Chelsea were beginning to make an impact on the top-flight in the late 1990s. The 1997-1998 season saw the Londoners record their first top-four finish and experience cup glory, with victories in both the League Cup and UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup under the guidance of Gianluca Vialli.

This was despite having almost as many defeats as relegated Bolton Wanderers and the controversial sacking of Ruud Gullit as first-team manager in February 1998.

Continental knowledge

This was Chelsea’s ninth successive season in England’s top-flight and they went into the 1997-1998 season looking to build on the previous season’s sixth-place finish, as well as victory in the FA Cup final over Middlesbrough.

It was Ruud Gullit’s second season in the dugout at Stamford Bridge and his continental knowledge saw more foreign players recruited in pre-season to add to the depth of the squad. Gus Poyet, who had been part of the Real Zaragoza squad that defeated Arsenal in the 1995 Cup Winners’ Cup final, arrived on a free transfer.

Graeme Le Saux returned to the club after a four-year stint at Blackburn Rovers which had yielded a Premier League title winners’ medal in 1995 with Chelsea paying Rovers £5 million for his services. Nigerian full-back Celestine Babayaro from Anderlecht and a new first-choice goalkeeper in Ed de Goey were among the other new arrivals.

Setting a high standard

Despite an opening day defeat to Coventry City thanks to a Dion Dublin hat-trick, Chelsea made a brilliant start to the season, winning five of their first eight games. This included an excellent 2-2 draw at Old Trafford with reigning champions Manchester United.

In August, they handed Premier League newcomers Barnsley a lesson in how tough life is in the top-flight. Gianluca Vialli, keen to start more matches in this campaign, scored a stunning four goals at Oakwell as the Tykes lost 6-0 on their own patch. By the end of September, Chelsea had already scored 22 goals and were averaging three goals a game.

Expansion to The Shed End and The West Stand meant Chelsea played their first three matches of the league campaign away from home whilst the redevelopment work was completed. Southampton were the first visitors to the modern-day Stamford Bridge and lost 4-2, with all of Chelsea’s goals coming in the first half.

Champions-elect Arsenal were the only side to win on their visit to The Bridge before Christmas and only away form was harming a serious title tilt from Gullit’s men. By the turn of the year, five of Chelsea’s six defeats had come away from home, including disappointing 1-0 defeats to Southampton and Bolton Wanderers. Nevertheless, they still put in some wonderful away performances and the 6-1 humbling they dished out on Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane was one of the best team displays of the entire campaign. Another summer recruit, Tore Andre Flo scored a hat-trick.

29TH DECEMBER 1997 TABLE

POS TABLE P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester United 21 14 4 3 49 16 +33 46
2 Blackburn Rovers 21 11 8 2 38 21 +17 41
3 CHELSEA 21 12 3 6 46 21 +25 39
4 Liverpool FC 20 11 4 5 36 19 +17 37
5 Leeds United 21 10 5 6 30 23 +7 35
6 Arsenal 20 9 7 4 35 23 +12 34

Gobsmacked Gullit

Although there was a disappointing 3-1 defeat away at struggling Everton in January 1998, Chelsea sat in second position when Gullit took his side to Highbury to face Arsenal on 8th February. The Dutchman was greeted warmly by Chairman Ken Bates when he arrived at the ground and everything seemed rosy in-terms of the relationship between manager and owner.

Two Stephen Hughes goals consigned Chelsea to their seventh away defeat of the campaign but they were still leading the chasing pack behind Manchester United and just five points away from the Red Devils too. Discussions were well underway regarding a contract extension for Gullit. Yet, there was to be a sensational story that broke from west London four days after the Arsenal loss.

Chelsea’s hierarchy held a news conference to confirm Gullit had been sacked. Bates said at the press gathering: “We were unable to meet his financial demands.” Managing Director Colin Hutchinson backed this up, adding: “There was no further scope for future negotiations.”

24 hours later, a rather stunned Gullit held his own press conference, claiming he didn’t know why he’d been sacked and demanded to know the real reason for his sudden departure. He dismissed the board’s claims that his wage demands were too high and confirmed he had been ready to sign a new deal to stay on as the club’s manager. Bates later admitted “I didn’t like his arrogance – in fact I never liked him.”

Even more surprisingly, Vialli was immediately appointed as his successor in a player-manager capacity, despite having no previous managerial experience. With Chelsea second in the league and into the semi-finals of the League Cup, plus a European quarter-final, the timing of this managerial change did have a detrimental effect on the rest of the Premier League season.

Hanging onto fourth

Chelsea’s Premier League campaign crumbled after this decision. Vialli lost his first three matches in-charge, including a 1-0 home defeat to Manchester United which saw many bookmakers deciding not to take anymore bets on where the title was going. However, United were about to be humbled by a team from London. However, it was Arsenal who went on a devastating run of form to snatch the Premier League title.

The players had seemed just as surprised as anyone by the board’s decision to dispense with Gullit’s services, plus the fact that one of their teammates was now their boss. Vialli still got the side playing some attractive football and this was demonstrated when Liverpool FC were well-beaten 4-1 on their visit to Stamford Bridge in late April. A final day victory over Bolton Wanderers ensured a fourth-place finish. However, there was a sense from within the fans that an opportunity was missed to launch a serious title challenge. Although they finished second highest goalscorers with 71 goals, Chelsea lost more games in the season than Wimbledon, who finished 19 points adrift and in 15th place. Relegated Bolton only lost one more match than what Chelsea did

There was a silver lining to the season though with double cup glory. For the second successive season, Middlesbrough were beaten in a cup final, losing 2-0 in the League Cup final. Right at the end of the season, Gianfranco Zola came off the bench to score the only goal in the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup Final against VfB Stuttgart.

FINAL 1997-1998 TABLE – THIRD TO EIGHTH

POS TABLE P W D L F A GD PTS
3 Liverpool FC 38 18 11 9 68 42 +26 65
4 CHELSEA 38 20 3 15 71 43 +28 63
5 Leeds United 38 17 8 13 57 46 +11 59
6 Blackburn Rovers 38 16 10 12 57 52 +5 58
7 Aston Villa 38 17 6 15 49 48 +1 57
8 West Ham United 38 16 8 14 56 57 -1 56

Premier League Rewind: 30th August-1st September 1997

Results: Arsenal 0-0 Tottenham Hotspur, Aston Villa 1-0 Leeds United, Chelsea 4-2 Southampton, Crystal Palace 1-2 Blackburn Rovers, Derby County 1-0 Barnsley, Manchester United 3-0 Coventry City, Sheffield Wednesday 1-0 Leicester City, West Ham United 3-1 Wimbledon, Liverpool FC P-P Newcastle United, Bolton Wanderers 0-0 Everton

The 1997-1998 season saw an action-packed August as the majority of teams played five games in the opening month of the campaign. Nine games took place on the final weekend of the month and 19 goals were scored. The tragic death of Diana, Princess of Wales in the early hours of Sunday, 31st August 1997 led to the postponement of the match at Anfield between Liverpool FC and Newcastle United.

The early season pacesetters were current champions Manchester United and the former winners of the Premier League, Blackburn Rovers. Blackburn had largely been in the doldrums since winning the title in 1995 but looked like a revitalised side under the guidance of the former Inter Milan coach, Roy Hodgson. They were scoring goals for fun too, netting 13 in their first four matches. Their fourth win in five games came at Selhurst Park over newly-promoted Crystal Palace. First half goals from Kevin Gallacher and Chris Sutton spearheaded Blackburn to a 2-1 victory and therefore, top spot at the end of August on goal difference.

Manchester United’s start to the season had been business-like. They’d scored eight times in their first five games and Peter Schmeichel hadn’t conceded a goal yet. Coventry City were the latest side to feel the punch of the Red Devils. Andy Cole, new skipper Roy Keane and Karel Poborsky were on the scoresheet as the home side eased to a 3-0 victory.

Another team who had made a strong side to the season were West Ham United. Harry Redknapp’s side won a London Derby at Upton Park against Wimbledon, winning 3-1. All the goals came in the second half, with West Ham’s three goals arriving in a seven-minute period through John Hartson, Marc Rieper and Eyal Berkovic.

The Hammers moved above Arsenal who were held to a goalless draw at Highbury in the North London Derby by Tottenham Hotspur. It would turn out to be Gerry Francis’ final North London Derby match in-charge of Spurs and he left having lost just one of seven encounters against the enemy from Highbury.

Another goalless came would be a controversial one between Bolton Wanderers and Everton. It was Bolton’s first game at their new state-of-the-art ground, The Reebok Stadium. During the second half, referee Stephen Lodge failed to spot that Gerry Taggart’s header had fallen six inches beyond the goal-line when it was hooked away by Everton defender Terry Phelan. This came at a time when goal-line technology was only a pipe dream. Come the end of the season, the teams would finish level on points with Everton above Bolton on goal difference. They survived, Bolton were relegated. It was a cruel twist come the end of the 1997-1998 campaign.

Aston Villa had made a rotten start to the campaign, losing their first four matches, having only scored twice. Brian Little’s side finally got off the scoreboard with a 1-0 victory against Leeds United. Dwight Yorke scored the only goal to inflict a third defeat in a week on Leeds. Another side who achieved their first victory was fellow Midlands side Derby County, beating Barnsley 1-0. However, they were only playing their third match of the season and their first game at their new home, Pride Park which completed the whole 90 minutes.

What else happened in August 1997?

  • The United Kingdom is left in mourning by the tragic death of Diana, Princess of Wales. She is killed in a car crash in Paris, along with her companion Dodi Al-Fayed when the Mercedes she was travelling in crashes in a tunnel whilst trying to escape some paparazzi photographers.
  • Steve Jobs returns to Apple Computers, whilst Microsoft buys a $150 million share of the financially-troubled giant.
  • Korean Air Flight 801 crashes while attempting to land in the United States territory of Guam, killing hundreds of passengers.
  • Former Grandstand presenter Helen Rollason is diagnosed with cancer and will undergo emergency surgery.
  • The controversial animated sitcom ‘South Park’ debuts on Comedy Central.
  • Britpop band Oasis continue to break music records. Their third album, ‘Be Here Now’, becomes the fastest selling album in UK history.

Seasonal Records: 1997-1998

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 1997-1998 Premier League season, as a third Premier League team emerged as a championship-winning side.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Arsenal 38 23 9 6 68 33 +35 78
2 Manchester United 38 23 8 7 73 26 +47 77
3 Liverpool FC 38 18 11 9 68 42 +26 65
4 Chelsea 38 20 3 15 71 43 +28 63
5 Leeds United 38 17 8 13 57 46 +11 59
6 Blackburn Rovers 38 16 10 12 57 52 +5 58
7 Aston Villa 38 17 6 15 49 48 +1 57
8 West Ham United 38 16 8 14 56 57 -1 56
9 Derby County 38 16 7 15 52 49 +3 55
10 Leicester City 38 13 14 11 51 41 +10 53
11 Coventry City 38 12 16 10 46 44 +2 52
12 Southampton 38 14 6 18 50 55 -5 48
13 Newcastle United 38 11 11 16 35 44 -9 44
14 Tottenham Hotspur 38 11 11 16 44 56 -12 44
15 Wimbledon 38 10 14 14 34 46 -12 44
16 Sheffield Wednesday 38 12 8 18 52 67 -15 44
17 Everton 38 9 13 16 41 56 -15 40
18 Bolton Wanderers 38 9 13 16 41 61 -20 40
19 Barnsley 38 10 5 23 37 82 -45 35
20 Crystal Palace 38 8 9 21 37 71 -34 33

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 1019
European qualifiers Arsenal (UEFA Champions League), Manchester United (UEFA Champions League), Liverpool FC (UEFA Cup), Leeds United (UEFA Cup), Blackburn Rovers (UEFA Cup), Aston Villa (UEFA Cup), Chelsea (UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup), Newcastle United (UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup), Crystal Palace (UEFA Intertoto Cup)
Longest winning run 10 games (Arsenal)
Longest unbeaten run 18 games (Arsenal)
Longest winless run 15 games (Crystal Palace)
Longest losing run 8 games (Crystal Palace)
Highest attendance 55,306 (Manchester United vs. Wimbledon)
Lowest attendance 7,688 (Wimbledon vs. Barnsley)

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal)
PFA Young Player of the Year Michael Owen (Liverpool FC)
Football Writers’ Award Dennis Bergkamp (Arsenal)
PFA Team of the Year Nigel Martyn, Graeme Le Saux, Colin Hendry, Gary Pallister, Gary Neville, David Batty, Nicky Butt, David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Dennis Bergkamp, Michael Owen
Manager of the Year Arsene Wenger (Arsenal)
Goal of the Season Dennis Bergkamp (Leicester City vs. ARSENAL)

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Dion Dublin Coventry City vs. Chelsea 3-2 9th August 1997
Chris Sutton Aston Villa vs. Blackburn Rovers 0-4 13th August 1997
Gianluca Vialli (4) Barnsley vs. Chelsea 0-6 24th August 1997
Dennis Bergkamp Leicester City vs. Arsenal 3-3 27th August 1997
Ian Wright Arsenal vs. Bolton Wanderers 4-1 13th September 1997
Patrik Berger Liverpool FC vs. Chelsea 4-2 5th October 1997
Andy Cole Manchester United vs. Barnsley 7-0 25th October 1997
Andy Booth Sheffield Wednesday vs. Bolton Wanderers 5-0 8th November 1997
Gianfranco Zola Chelsea vs. Derby County 4-0 29th November 1997
Tore Andre Flo Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea 1-6 6th December 1997
Duncan Ferguson Everton vs. Bolton Wanderers 3-2 28th December 1997
Kevin Gallacher Blackburn Rovers vs. Aston Villa 5-0 17th January 1998
Michael Owen Sheffield Wednesday vs. Liverpool FC 3-3 14th February 1998
Chris Sutton Blackburn Rovers vs. Leicester City 5-3 28th February 1998
Darren Huckerby Leeds United vs. Coventry City 3-3 25th April 1998
Jurgen Klinsmann (4) Wimbledon vs. Tottenham Hotspur 2-6 2nd May 1998

 

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1= Michael Owen Liverpool FC 18
1= Chris Sutton Blackburn Rovers 18
1= Dion Dublin Coventry City 18
4= Dennis Bergkamp Arsenal 16
4= Andy Cole Manchester United 16
4= Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink Leeds United 16
4= Kevin Gallacher Blackburn Rovers 16
8 John Hartson West Ham United 15
9 Darren Huckerby Coventry City 14
10 Paulo Wanchope Derby County 13
11= Marc Overmars Arsenal 12
11= Dwight Yorke Aston Villa 12
11= Francesco Baiano Derby County 12
11= Paolo di Canio Sheffield Wednesday 12
11= Nathan Blake Bolton Wanderers 12
16= Tore Andre Flo Chelsea 11
16= Matt Le Tissier Southampton 11
16= Steve McManaman Liverpool FC 11
16= Gianluca Vialli Chelsea 11
16= Duncan Ferguson Everton 11
16= Egil Ostenstad Southampton 11
22= Ian Wright Arsenal 10
22= Rod Wallace Leeds United 10
22= Emile Heskey Leicester City 10
22= Neil Redfearn Barnsley 10

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Manchester United 7-0 Barnsley 25th October 1997
Barnsley 0-6 Chelsea 24th August 1997
West Ham United 6-0 Barnsley 10th January 1998
Blackburn Rovers 7-2 Sheffield Wednesday 25th August 1997
Manchester United 6-1 Sheffield Wednesday 1st November 1997
Tottenham Hotspur 1-6 Chelsea 6th December 1997
Arsenal 5-0 Barnsley 4th October 1997
Liverpool FC 5-0 West Ham United 2nd May 1998
Derby County 0-5 Leeds United 15th March 1998
Blackburn Rovers 5-0 Aston Villa 17th January 1998

 

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
9 Blackburn Rovers 7-2 Sheffield Wednesday 25th August 1997
8 Chelsea 6-2 Crystal Palace 11th March 1998
8 Wimbledon 2-6 Tottenham Hotspur 2nd May 1998
8 Blackburn Rovers 5-3 Leicester City 28th February 1998
7 Manchester United 7-0 Barnsley 25th October 1997
7 Manchester United 6-1 Sheffield Wednesday 1st November 1997
7 Tottenham Hotspur 1-6 Chelsea 6th December 1997
7 Wimbledon 2-5 Manchester United 22nd November 1997
7 Sheffield Wednesday 2-5 Derby County 24th September 1997
7 Bolton Wanderers 5-2 Crystal Palace 2nd May 1998
7 Blackburn Rovers 3-4 Leeds United 14th September 1997
7 West Ham United 4-3 Leicester City 10th May 1998
7 Barnsley 4-3 Southampton 14th March 1998
7 Leeds United 4-3 Derby County 8th November 1997
6 Barnsley 0-6 Chelsea 24th August 1997
6 West Ham United 6-0 Barnsley 10th January 1998
6 Bolton Wanderers 1-5 Coventry City 31st January 1998
6 Liverpool FC 4-2 Chelsea 5th October 1997
6 Chelsea 4-2 Southampton 30th August 1997
6 West Ham United 2-4 Southampton 25th April 1998

 

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Francis Jeffers Manchester United 2-0 Everton 16 years, 11 months, 1 day 26th December 1997
Gareth Barry Sheffield Wednesday 1-3 Aston Villa 17 years, 2 months, 9 days 2nd May 1998
Michael Owen Wimbledon 1-1 Liverpool FC 17 years, 7 months, 26 days 9th August 1997
Danny Cadamarteri Derby County 3-1 Everton 17 years, 11 months, 1 day 13th September 1997
Michael Ball Newcastle United 1-0 Everton 17 years, 11 months, 22 days 24th September 1997
Junior Agogo Newcastle United 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday 18 years, 8 days 9th August 1997
Stephen McPhail Leicester City 1-0 Leeds United 18 years, 1 month, 29 days 7th February 1998
Aaron Hughes Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 Newcastle United 18 years, 2 months, 2 days 10th January 1998
Richard Dunne Everton 3-2 Bolton Wanderers 18 years, 3 months, 7 days 28th December 1997
Paolo Vernazza Arsenal 1-0 Crystal Palace 18 years, 3 months, 20 days 21st February 1998

 

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Steve Ogrizovic Leeds United 3-3 Coventry City 40 years, 7 months, 13 days 25th April 1998
Neville Southall Everton 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur 39 years, 2 months, 13 days 29th November 1997
Peter Beardsley Bolton Wanderers 1-5 Coventry City 37 years, 13 days 31st January 1998
Gary Mabbutt Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Southampton 36 years, 8 months, 17 days 10th May 1998
Peter Shirtliff Southampton 4-1 Barnsley 36 years, 7 months, 2 days 8th November 1997
Dave Watson Everton 1-1 Coventry City 36 years, 5 months, 20 days 10th May 1998
Clive Wilson Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Everton 36 years, 4 months, 22 days 4th April 1998
Ian Rush Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 Newcastle United 36 years, 2 months, 21 days 10th January 1998
Stuart Pearce Newcastle United 3-1 Chelsea 36 years, 8 days 2nd May 1998
Ludek Miklosko Derby County 2-0 West Ham United 35 years, 11 months, 27 days 6th December 1997

 

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1 Peter Schmeichel Manchester United 16
2 Kasey Keller Leicester City 14
3= David Seaman Arsenal 13
3= Mart Poom Derby County 13
5 Ed de Goey Chelsea 12
6= David James Liverpool FC 11
6= Nigel Martyn Leeds United 11
6= Tim Flowers Blackburn Rovers 11
9 Keith Branagan Bolton Wanderers 10
10 Mark Bosnich Aston Villa 9

Seasonal Records: 1996-1997

For all the statistical fans out there, here are some of the season’s records from the 1996-1997 Premier League season, which saw the first ever points deduction for a team in the Premier League.

FINAL TABLE

Position Team P W D L F A GD PTS
1 Manchester United 38 21 12 5 76 44 +32 75
2 Newcastle United 38 19 11 8 73 40 +33 68
3 Arsenal 38 19 11 8 62 32 +30 68
4 Liverpool FC 38 19 11 8 62 37 +25 68
5 Aston Villa 38 17 10 11 47 34 +13 61
6 Chelsea 38 16 11 11 58 55 +3 59
7 Sheffield Wednesday 38 14 15 9 50 51 -1 57
8 Wimbledon 38 15 11 12 49 46 +3 56
9 Leicester City 38 12 11 15 46 54 -8 47
10 Tottenham Hotspur 38 13 7 18 44 51 -7 46
11 Leeds United 38 11 13 14 28 38 -10 46
12 Derby County 38 11 13 14 45 58 -13 46
13 Blackburn Rovers 38 9 15 14 42 43 -1 42
14 West Ham United 38 10 12 16 39 48 -9 42
15 Everton 38 10 12 16 44 57 -13 42
16 Southampton 38 10 11 17 50 56 -6 41
17 Coventry City 38 9 14 15 38 54 -16 41
18 Sunderland 38 10 10 18 35 53 -18 40
19 Middlesbrough* 38 10 12 16 51 60 -9 39
20 Nottingham Forest 38 6 16 16 31 59 -28 34

*Middlesbrough were deducted three points for failing to fulfil a fixture away at Blackburn Rovers in December 1996

THE BASIC STATS

Goals Scored 970
European qualifiers Manchester United (UEFA Champions League), Newcastle United (UEFA Champions League), Arsenal (UEFA Cup), Liverpool FC (UEFA Cup), Aston Villa (UEFA Cup), Leicester City (UEFA Cup), Chelsea (UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup)
Longest winning run 7 games (Newcastle United)
Longest unbeaten run 16 games (Manchester United)
Longest winless run 16 games (Nottingham Forest)
Longest losing run 6 games (Everton)
Highest attendance 55,314 (Manchester United vs. Wimbledon)
Lowest attendance 7,979 (Wimbledon vs. Leeds United)

AWARDS

PFA Players’ Player of the Year Alan Shearer (Newcastle United)
PFA Young Player of the Year David Beckham (Manchester United)
Football Writers’ Award Gianfranco Zola (Chelsea)
PFA Team of the Year David Seaman, Stig Inge Bjornebye, Tony Adams, Mark Wright, Gary Neville, David Batty, Roy Keane, Steve McManaman, David Beckham, Alan Shearer, Ian Wright
Manager of the Year Alex Ferguson (Manchester United)
Goal of the Season David Beckham (Wimbledon vs. MANCHESTER UNITED)

HAT-TRICK HEROES

Player Teams Score Date
Fabrizio Ravanelli Middlesbrough vs. Liverpool FC 3-3 17th August 1996
Kevin Campbell Coventry City vs. Nottingham Forest 0-3 17th August 1996
Ian Wright Arsenal vs. Sheffield Wednesday 4-1 16th September 1996
Dwight Yorke Newcastle United vs. Aston Villa 4-3 30th September 1996
Gary Speed Everton vs. Southampton 7-1 16th November 1996
Robbie Fowler (4 goals) Liverpool FC vs. Middlesbrough 5-1 14th December 1996
Alan Shearer Newcastle United vs. Leicester City 4-3 2nd February 1997
Ian Marshall Leicester City vs. Derby County 4-2 22nd February 1997
Steffen Iversen Sunderland vs. Tottenham Hotspur 0-4 4th March 1997
Fabrizio Ravanelli Middlesbrough vs. Derby County 6-1 5th March 1997
Kevin Gallacher Blackburn Rovers vs. Wimbledon 3-1 15th March 1997
Paul Kitson West Ham United vs. Sheffield Wednesday 5-1 3rd May 1997

TOP SCORERS

Position Player Teams No of Goals
1 Alan Shearer Newcastle United 25
2 Ian Wright Arsenal 23
3= Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Manchester United 18
3= Robbie Fowler Liverpool FC 18
5 Dwight Yorke Aston Villa 17
6= Les Ferdinand Newcastle United 16
6= Fabrizio Ravanelli Middlesbrough 16
8= Matt Le Tissier Southampton 13
8= Dion Dublin Coventry City 13
8= Juninho Middlesbrough 13
11= Dennis Bergkamp Arsenal 12
11= Stan Collymore Liverpool FC 12
11= Steve Claridge Leicester City 12
14= Eric Cantona Manchester United 11
14= Efan Ekoku Wimbledon 11
14= Dean Sturridge Derby County 11
14= Chris Sutton Blackburn Rovers 11
18= Andy Booth Sheffield Wednesday 10
18= Emile Heskey Leicester City 10
18= Kevin Gallacher Blackburn Rovers 10
18= Duncan Ferguson Everton 10
22= Savo Milosevic Aston Villa 9
22= Gianluca Vialli Chelsea 9
22= Gary Speed Everton 9
22= Egil Ostenstad Southampton 9

BIGGEST VICTORIES

Newcastle United 7-1 Tottenham Hotspur 28th December 1996
Everton 7-1 Southampton 16th November 1996
Middlesbrough 6-1 Derby County 5th March 1997
Manchester United 5-0 Sunderland 21st December 1996
Newcastle United 5-0 Manchester United 20th October 1996
Newcastle United 5-0 Nottingham Forest 11th May 1997
Aston Villa 5-0 Wimbledon 22nd December 1996
Chelsea 6-2 Sunderland 16th March 1997
Liverpool FC 5-1 Chelsea 21st September 1996
West Ham United 5-1 Sheffield Wednesday 3rd May 1997

HIGHEST SCORING GAMES

No of Goals Teams Date
9 Southampton 6-3 Manchester United 26th October 1996
8 Newcastle United 7-1 Tottenham Hotspur 28th December 1996
8 Everton 7-1 Southampton 16th November 1996
8 Chelsea 6-2 Sunderland 16th March 1997
7 Middlesbrough 6-1 Derby County 5th March 1997
7 Newcastle United 4-3 Aston Villa 30th September 1996
7 Newcastle United 4-3 Leicester City 2nd February 1997
7 Liverpool FC 4-3 Newcastle United 10th March 1997
7 West Ham United 4-3 Tottenham Hotspur 24th February 1997
6 Liverpool FC 5-1 Chelsea 21st September 1996
6 Liverpool FC 5-1 Middlesbrough 14th December 1996
6 West Ham United 5-1 Sheffield Wednesday 3rd May 1997
6 Liverpool FC 4-2 Nottingham Forest 17th December 1996
6 Wimbledon 4-2 Sheffield Wednesday 12th October 1996
6 Leicester City 4-2 Derby County 22nd February 1997
6 Middlesbrough 4-2 Sheffield Wednesday 18th January 1997
6 Chelsea 2-4 Wimbledon 19th October 1996
6 Middlesbrough 4-2 Everton 26th December 1996
6 Blackburn Rovers 2-4 Leicester City 11th May 1997
6 Derby County 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur 22nd March 1997

YOUNGEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Richard Dunne Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 Everton 17 years, 3 months, 21 days 11th January 1997
Michael Owen Wimbledon 2-1 Liverpool FC 17 years, 4 months, 22 days 6th May 1997
Wesley Boyle Leeds United 0-1 Newcastle United 17 years, 5 months, 22 days 21st September 1996
Michael Ball Everton 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur 17 years, 6 months, 10 days 12th April 1997
Danny Cadamarteri Everton 1-2 Chelsea 17 years, 6 months, 29 days 11th May 1997
Andy Campbell Aston Villa 1-0 Middlesbrough 17 years, 7 months, 12 days 30th November 1996
Jody Morris Southampton 0-0 Chelsea 17 years, 7 months, 27 days 18th August 1996
Rio Ferdinand Arsenal 2-0 West Ham United 17 years, 9 months, 10 days 17th August 1996
Michael Branch Wimbledon 4-0 Everton 17 years, 10 months, 20 days 7th September 1996
Michael Bridges Sunderland 0-0 Leicester City 18 years, 12 days 17th August 1996

OLDEST PLAYERS USED

Player Teams Age at the time Date
Gordon Strachan Coventry City 1-2 Derby County 40 years, 2 months, 24 days 3rd May 1997
Bryan Robson Arsenal 2-0 Middlesbrough 39 years, 11 months, 21 days 1st January 1997
Steve Ogrizovic Tottenham Hotspur 1-2 Coventry City 39 years, 7 months, 29 days 11th May 1997
Les Sealey Manchester United 2-0 West Ham United 39 years, 7 months, 12 days 11th May 1997
Neville Southall Everton 1-2 Chelsea 38 years, 7 months, 25 days 11th May 1997
Mick Harford Wimbledon 0-2 Aston Villa 38 years, 1 month, 28 days 9th April 1997
Dave Beasant Southampton 0-1 Liverpool FC 37 years, 9 months, 9 days 29th December 1996
Paul McGrath Derby County 1-3 Arsenal 37 years, 5 months, 7 days 11th May 1997
Chris Woods Blackburn Rovers 2-1 Southampton 37 years, 16 days 30th November 1996
Brian Borrows Coventry City 1-2 Derby County 36 years, 6 months, 13 days 3rd May 1997

CLEAN SHEETS

Position Player Teams No of Clean Sheets
1 Nigel Martyn Leeds United 19
2 Peter Schmeichel Manchester United 14
3 Ian Walker Tottenham Hotspur 13
4 David James Liverpool FC 12
5= Kevin Pressman Sheffield Wednesday 11
5= Neil Sullivan Wimbledon 11
7= Michael Oakes Aston Villa 10
7= David Seaman Arsenal 10
7= Tim Flowers Blackburn Rovers 10
7= Ludek Miklosko West Ham United 10